January 13, 2010

Hoping and praying

Posted in Faith, Infertility, IVF tagged , , at 9:55 am by lifebytheday

Today at 6am I officially got back on the wagon – the IVF wagon, that is!  I did my first Lupron shot for our upcoming third (and hopefully final!) IVF cycle.  The Lupron shots are always the easiest (tiny needles), so it’s nice to be able to start with those.  Just grab a roll of belly fat and work away! 😉

In honor of officially beginning my cycle, I joined my mother at daily mass this morning.  She had spoken with her favorite priest at our parish and asked him to say a blessing for me – at this point, I’ll take all the prayers I can get!  God bless Fr. Jean – he prayed over me for a good five minutes, despite the fact that his mind must have been miles away.  His family is from Haiti, the town of Port-au-Prince, which was hit most heavily by the devastation of yesterday’s earthquake.  Communication is still down between Haiti and the rest of the world, so he has no idea whether his family is safe.  It meant more than I can adequately convey that he took the time and energy to pray for me and to pass along strength and comfort to me.  Please join me in praying for Fr. Jean-Pierre and his family in this very scary time.

I also wanted to pass along a prayer that I discovered, that I know I will be repeating many times over the next month or so…

A Prayer to St. Gerard, the patron saint of Motherhood

O glorious Saint Gerard, powerful intercessor before God, and wonder worker of our day, I call upon you and seek your help. You who always fulfilled God’s will on earth, help me to do God’s holy will. Intercede with the Giver of life, from whom all parenthood proceeds, that I may conceive and raise children who will please God in this life, and be heirs to the kingdom of heaven. Amen.

Today, I am most thankful for my faith. God bless all of us.

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January 7, 2010

Give thanks

Posted in Faith tagged , , at 1:56 pm by lifebytheday

(Sorry in advance folks, today’s post is more religion-heavy than normal. ;-))

This morning on my way to work (late!), I got stuck behind two slow-pokes on the sidewalk.  As I moved out to go around them, grumbling the whole way, I heard the woman say “oh yeah, every morning that I wake up, I give thanks.”  Unfortunately, that’s all that I heard, but man, was that a wake up call.  As I was walking away, I almost felt like God had come down from heaven and given me a slap in the face.  Lately I’ve been so lost in my own world (not loving work, still not pregnant, etc.) that I forget to be thankful for all of the things that I DO have.  So, I’m adding a resolution.  Every day I’m going to try to think of (AND post) at least one thing that I’m thankful for.  And if I don’t, I expect you guys to call me on it!  😉

Today, I am thankful:

  • For a fantastic night last night with S – nothing fancy, just a good dinner, cuddling on the couch watching a movie, cleaning up the kitchen together, and early bed. 😉
  • For my new H.unter fleece socks I got for Christmas – it has finally warmed up to like 33 here in Boston and I loved splashing through puddles on the way back from lunch, while still being warm and toasty in my rain boots
  • For the compliments I’ve received on the random outfit I pulled together this morning (a green sweater and cream and green print skirt), even though the first words out of S’s mouth this morning was “Is it St. Patrick’s Day?” LOL!

Finally, I just wanted to share something that I came across earlier this week.  I subscribe to an email list from “Our Daily Bread,” a Christian daily devotional with a thought for the day, usually accompanied by a bible reference and prayer.  I don’t always keep up with the emails, but some days they seem to be speaking directly to me, like the message posted on January 2nd.

“The highway that winds around the southern shore of Lake Michigan can be treacherous in the winter. One weekend as we were driving back to Grand Rapids from Chicago, a buildup of snow and ice slowed traffic, caused numerous accidents, and almost doubled our drive time. We were relieved as we eased off the expressway onto our final road. It was then that my husband said out loud, ‘Thanks, Lord. I think I can take it from here.’

Just as he finished saying the words, our car spun around 180 degrees. As we came to a stop, hearts pounding, we could just imagine God saying: ‘Are you sure?’ “

Why do we sometimes try to go it alone in life when at every moment we have access to God? He said: “I am with you and will keep you wherever you go” (Gen. 28:15). And He assures us: “I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Heb. 13:5).

I’m going to print and post this passage, to read on those days when I need some extra help, but also on the days when I feel like everything is going well.  I need to remember to appreciate what I have, thank God for it, and know that he is always with me.  I’m sure everyone knows the poem “Footprints,” right?  I just want to make sure that once we get pregnant (and are delivered of a healthy baby), I don’t forget how far God walked with me in his hands.

March 3, 2009

For the love of babies

Posted in Infertility tagged , at 1:16 pm by lifebytheday

One of my very best friends had a little boy on Saturday, and I’m so excited to meet him!  I’m going to see them this afternoon…just counting down the hours!  *Update* Just got a call from my friend warning me that the baby has a little jaundice and is not “holdable” at the moment 😛 and that she’d understand if I didn’t want to make the drive out there to see them today.  She’s so cute.  I told her that of course I still wanted to come see them, and that it didn’t matter if he wasn’t holdable, that we get to keep him (!), so I’m sure I’ll get to hold him soon. 🙂

That is the one thing that I am so thankful that infertility has not taken from me – the ability to be around babies and pregnant women, and truly rejoice in the miracle that is life.  Infertility may have destroyed my control, my dignity, my body (!), and my bank account…to name a few…but at least it hasn’t ruined my ability to enjoy babies!

I know that some people can’t stand to attend baby showers or see baby pictures, and I am so glad that I haven’t had to deal with those (totally valid!) feelings.  I obviously get sad that I don’t have a baby (or a bump!) of my own, but thankfully am still able to be genuinely happy and excited for those friends of mine lucky enough to get pregnant.  I love spending time with my friends and their children…and almost have to get that “baby fix” from time to time!

With all that said, if my friends weren’t totally wonderful and understanding, I think it would be completely different.  Most of my close friends know that we’re dealing with infertility, and they are all (mostly!) sensitive to what we’re going through.  My friend who just gave birth is the most wonderful of all.  She just completely gets it and always knows what to say, so it was (and is) so easy to be over-the-moon happy for her. 

I just have to wait, and pray, and believe that God will bring me my baby when he or she is ready. 🙂

February 26, 2009

The Year of Living…

Posted in Books tagged , at 8:37 am by lifebytheday

I started reading a great book yesterday – The Year of Living Biblically, by A.J. Jacobs – and yes, it was a coincidence that I started it on Ash Wednesday.  I’m sure many of you have heard of this book, and as of page 150 or so, I can definitely say that it doesn’t disappoint.  Besides being very funny – one of my favorite parts so far is based on his discussion of not being able to touch women when they are “impure,” which leads to one of A.J.’s co-workers providing him with an Excel spreadsheet detailing her cycle (!) – it’s also very thoughtful.  I hope that reading this book will help me re-connect with my own faith.

I think that part of the reason I’ve been feeling extra down lately is because I’ve let my faith slip.  I am a pretty liberal Catholic, but I generally enjoy, appreciate, and value my faith, and in the past few months, I’ve foregone attending Mass in exchange for those few extra hours of sleep or time with S.  I went to AW services with my Mom last night, and left feeling such a sense of peace and hope.  I have some definite plans for Lent and I’m hoping that they will help get me in a better mental and emotional place for when we’re ready to start our next round of IVF.

Interestingly enough, A.J. and his wife also went through IVF, so there’s a lot of discussion in the book as to the moral consequences of that decision.  I don’t think I’ve reached his final word on the subject, but at the moment, A.J. and I agree that the commandment “be fruitful and multiply” justifies any means necessary. 

Wishing all of my fellow IF-sufferers peace and hope this Lenten season.  Here’s to “being fruitful”!